Flinders Ranges to Kangaroo Island – a natural history

The drawing below is a compilation of some of the sketches made on my last big camping trip through South Australia, redrawn and rearranged to suit the large sheet of paper. (To see some of the original sketches, visit my October 2013 archive). The sketches tell part of the story of the trip through the foliage, seeds, nuts and insects, with annotations as in my sketch book. These are from the dry inland areas, I am planning to do a companion piece using the objects found on the beaches and riversides.

The drawings have been amended a bit, tidied up and re-interpreted in some cases, but they are still the essence of what was journalled at the time – working with them transported me back to the hot, dusty days in the Flinders Ranges (Arkaroola and Wilpena) and the cool, damp greenery of Kangaroo Island.

The drawings were done with pen, then painted in watercolour, the annotations written in pen, on Magnani Corona paper. 70 cm x 50 cm

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Zucchini flower drawing becomes a concertina

The set of six drawings on separate panels making up one large drawing based on a zucchini flower has finally been resolved. A lot of thinking and decisions made, which were then rescinded for new approaches, have resulted in a concertina book.

It’s not a conventional book, no words and really no pages, but it seems the best way to describe it. The original post about it is here, so you can see the way it was at that stage. One panel had been completely worked with colour all over, and one decision was to keep to minimal colour with plenty of white left, so that panel was started again. More work was done on all the panels, and an element of red brought in to help link them. The completed one has been put aside, maybe it will have a new life too. Clearly, since the drawing has gone from the six panels arranged in three rows of two, to a single row, I had to decide which went where. The final layout has them running in pairs, with the centre pair beginning from the left, followed by the bottom pair, then ending with the top pair. I did add a few more lines in order to make the connections smooth, but really they worked neatly this way.

The drawings have been repeated on the back in pen, mirror fashion, but with no added colour, so when light is on the book from the front the colours glow gently on the back. Joining the panels together caused a major hold-up as I tested and thought through numerous ideas. In the end I decided to make the joins a feature rather than trying to blend them in, so used red paper, which I then painted with red acrylic to avoid the paper quickly fading. I used red paper, rather than white paper painted red to avoid the white edges.

It is pen and ink with pastel pencils, finished with Prismacolor pencils on heavy, cold pressed watercolour paper.

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Ten new pendants from paintings

A new approach to making these pendants – instead of covering the digital images of my little paintings with two-part resin, I discovered some small glass tiles that fit perfectly in the bezel backs. Once the image is securely attached to the back of the glass with a diamond finish (i.e. totally clear) glue and trimmed it can be glued into the bezel base. I am pleased with the way they have turned out – the backs are not brilliant quality, but they are silver plated so look nice. Like the previous ones (see here) these are 1 inch or 2.5 cm square. Using the glass tiles is easy for assembly, and considerably less toxic than the resin. I am tentatively offering them for sale – I am thinking $20 (Aus) plus postage and packing, and they will come with a snake-type chain. Any takers?!

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Four more little ones

The little 10 x10 cm oil paintings based on plant imagery keep on coming. There are over 50 that I still have, and more that have been sold. The size and square format is something I am very attached to – can’t see these stopping, but they are interspersed with larger oil paintings and works on paper in pencil and pen.

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